Earlier this week, I interviewed venture capitalist and longtime media investor Alan Patricof at the paidContent future of business media conference at the Waldorf. 

Alan’s fund is paidContent’s sole investor. His excitement about the event echoed an observation by Fortune magazine in a feature by Oliver Ryan titled "The old guy can pick ’em" which Fortune covered the last paidContent event:  Patricof hovers like a vigilant tennis parent at a juniors tournament.

Tuesday’s event was not junior, it was the big leagues.  Nearly everyone in the business media world was on stage from bankers Steven Rattner and John Suhler, to Dow Jones Publisher L. Gordon Krovitz, Om "GigaOm" Malik, Reed Media CEO Tad Smith, Fox’s Neil Cavuto, CNET CEO Neil Ashe, Forbes lead investor/rock guitarist Roger McNamee and many others. 

The formal, cavernous Grand Ballroom might seem to be an odd choice for a media start-up, but it worked.  For me, having attended numerous awards events in the room over the past 20 years, it was inspiring to see all this materialize out the hard work and smarts of a Rafat Ali and his scrappy group of blogger/journalists.   

Alan and his partners have been investing in media properties for 35 years since he initially invested in New York magazine.  He’s excited about new media opportunities and is making a number of early stage investments, mostly under $3 million.  His new company is Greycroft Partner.

He believes in the emergence of niche, vertical media including the Huffington Post, where  he is also an investor. 

For Rafat to have built this juggernaut from his Los Angeles home is both astounding and inspirational.  Congrats to Rafat, Staci and whole team. Looks to us at the purple channel that Alan sure "can pick ’em."

— Andy Plesser

You can grab the embed code of this interview right here.  You can also find all of our video coverage from the conference is up on paidContent now.

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